Five ways to prepare your home for hurricane season

June and July typically mean pools, patios, BBQs, and fireworks – but for those of us in Houston, these hot, humid months also usher in something far more serious: hurricane season. One key lesson we all took away from 2017’s Hurricane Harvey (and before that, Hurricanes Ike and Rita) is the critical importance of being prepared. That means keeping your gas tanks full and stocking up on water, food, and batteries … but it also means ensuring your home is well-positioned for whatever the weather brings over the summer.

Don’t wait to prepare for potential storms. Instead, use this month to get ahead of the game with these five easy hurricane prep tips:

  1. Trim your trees regularly. You know that pruning your trees keeps them healthy and strong, but it may also help your home make it through a hurricane in one piece. Trees that have been neglected are more likely to break under pressure from high winds, sending loose limbs and branches crashing to your yard — or worse, on top of your roof or through a window. Don’t risk it. Keeping your tree canopy trimmed regularly might make all the difference in whether your house makes it through a hurricane unscathed.
  2. Make sure your doors and windows are properly sealed. It’s not uncommon for the seals around your home’s entrances to wear down. These small gaps can lead to big problems once they deteriorate enough to let moisture through. Don’t wait for a hurricane to put your door and window seals to the test. Use this time to recaulk them before they start to leak.
  3. Clean out your gutters and drains. Over time, leaves, branches, and pine needles can all accumulate in your gutters, eventually clogging your drain pipes and restricting the water that moves through them. If these blockages go unchecked, that water could ultimately flow into cracks in your foundation. Break out the leafblower or gutter scoop now, and start clearing away debris before it has a chance to cause any costly damage.
  4. Keep your yard clear. We all know what can happen when high winds meet lawn tools, outdoor furniture, or even heavy sticks and branches. As a general rule, keep your yard as clear as possible, and if the weather looks poised to take a turn for the worse, play it safe and move any heavy objects into the garage.
  5. When all else fails, have your home ready for evacuation. If your home is prone to flooding, designate a high and dry location that you can use to store valuables. You’ll also want to have plywood or window protection pre-cut and staged so you can protect your windows and doors from high winds. Finally, make sure you know how to cut off the gas or power if you have to evacuate. You never know what might happen when you’re gone. Turning off the power or gas can prevent additional damage if a tree should fall through your roof while you’re away.

There’s no way to prevent bad weather from striking, but you can take steps to hurricane-proof your home — and we can help. Schedule a walkthrough today so you can rest a little easier all summer long.

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